USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center

An NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

Population Research Core

USC Norris created the Population Research Core (PRC) in July 2019 to address the need for a state-of-the-art shared resource to provide consultation, access, and support for leveraging population-based data resources. The mission of the PRC is to maximize the impact of USC Norris’ catchment-relevant research by providing members with consultation and coordinated access to unique local and national population-based data resources and assessment tools. The PRC provides this data to the USC Norris Data Science Core for integration with clinical and or other data and subsequent analysis. In certain specialized areas, such as geospatial analysis, the PRC also provides analytic support. In its first year of operation, the PRC supported 34 funded projects in the Cancer Control Research Program, Cancer Epidemiology Research Program, and Translational and Clinical Sciences Program (five of which contributed to new externally funded projects). The PRC also supports the Office of Community Outreach and Engagement (COE) by providing population data from multiple sources (incidence, mortality, risk factors) as well as geospatial data intervention targeting.

PRC Services

      • Assist with access, interpretation, and study design for surveillance data on catchment area cancer burdens, disparities, trends, and geospatial data to assess recruitment feasibility, target interventions, and monitor intervention effects at the individual and neighborhood levels.
      • Assist with data access, interpretation, and study design for research using medical claims, prescription and hospital discharge data, including interpretation of ICDO and other coding schema in these databases.
      • Assist with access, interpretation and study design for neighborhood-level environmental exposure data.
      • Consult on the collection and analysis of novel individual-level naturalistic data (ecological momentary assessment (EMA), accelerometry and UV dosimetry).
      • Consult on the appropriate standardized data elements for assessing behavioral and sociodemographic risk factors for cancer, such as social determinants of health and acculturation.
      • Provide targeted training in the use of cancer registry data, medical claims data, and the collection and analysis of geospatial data for cancer control.

Contact Us:

Marlene Caldera

Project Manager 

Phone: 323-865‑0682

PRC Policies

      • PRC chargeback provides a per-hour fee or support on grants (if an investigator is already funded).
      • Investigators seeking help should contact the PRC well in advance of deadlines in order to be assured that assistance can be provided.
      • PRC will provide initial free consultation to those requesting Core services to determine the feasibility and scope of a project. The potential outputs of the initial consultation period will be a feasibility assessment, project scope, and project plan including cost estimate and timeline. Once the project plan is developed and agreed upon, all further activities will generate Core charges
      • The PRC provides consultation and support on research study design for cancer related peer-reviewed grant applications and submission of proposals for all external funding. There is no charge to NCCC members for consultation and assistance for cancer-focused grant submissions provided PRC faculty or staff members are included with effort support on the grant submission, or funding PRC service chargebacks are included in the budget of the grant application.  Cancer Center members seeking PRC help with grant applications will be required to sign a Memorandum of Understanding agreeing to these terms.
      • Acknowledgment of the Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center CCSG grant (NCI grant # P30CA014089) in scientific manuscripts is required when PRC services have been provided.

PRC Leadership